“I paint to never die.
Born in Abarán, Murcia (Spain), in 1985, Bran Sólo defines himself as a “Good person, painter, illustrator, designer and photographer, as well as many other things I never wanted to be“.
Since childhood he is interested in artistic expression and culture developing hobbies such as scale modeling, reading scientific-technological articles and music, and also enjoys as an amateur of astronomy, archaeology and the history of ancient Egypt and Arab countries, as well as Celtic culture, paleontology and especially oil painting and drawing.
Graduated in 2006 in Computer Applications Development and Database Analysis, he worked for seven years in the technology sector.
In 2010 he participated in the official programme of parallel events of the European Biennial of Contemporary Art Manifesta, in its eighth edition, with an exhibition at the Casas Consistoriales space in Mazarrón.
In 2012 he decided to abandon his work as a computer programmer and lifestyle to devote himself to drawing and enroll in the School of Art of Murcia, leaving behind family, couple and home and moving alone to a studio in the city of Murcia.
It is in the same school where he discovers that an eye disease, of unknown origin, conditions his perception from childhood. A macular lesion, formed by scars in the central area of the retina, distorts the images in a way that it describes as “kaleidoscopic“, sharply multiplying the images with high contrast or brightness. In this way, he discovers that he cannot certainly find the line that separates a white area from a black one, confuses volume with emptiness, the positive with the negative and, except in specific light circumstances, perceives all objects multiplied up to eight or ten copies, depending on distance, and especially those that are luminous, making it difficult to visualize screens and projections as well as elements that emit or reflect moderate amounts of light. This condition, which forces the brain to interpret reality very subjectively, gives it a “unique vision”, which he sustains with humour “is the most important quality that an artist must have“.
He finished his studies in 2014 and graduated in Plastic Arts and Design in Illustration, presenting in his final project the Tarot de Laguna by which he is qualified with the highest score of the jury, which grants him an Erasmus scholarship that takes him to Oporto.
After his stay in the Portuguese city, he moved to Madrid where he officially began his artistic caree. He moves in 2015 to Barcelona where he continues his work.
In 2015 he holds his first solo exhibition: “Perfume de flor de cuchillo” in Kipfer&Lover, Malaga, which is a great success.
He returns to Murcia in 2016 where he currently resides.
From that moment on, his career advances exponentially and in a short time he manages to show his work at the Carmen Thyssen Museum in Malaga, at the ESTAMPA fair in Madrid, at the gallery NB7 of the FLECHA fair in the same city, as well as in other spaces such as Échale Guindas Galería, Matraca Gallery, VillaPuchero Factory, Factoria de Arte y Desarrollo, Swinton & Grant, The Folio Club, The Folio Club, Nigredo Espacio, El Gallinero or Vergel Espacio.
In addition, he collaborates with the publishers of 180hilos, exhibiting works in serial edition at MACBA and CCCB in Barcelona, CAIXA Forum Madrid and at the Centre Pompidou in Malaga, as well as ARCO Art Fair 2018 (Llibreria Laie Stand) and manages to find a niche in specialised shops and art galleries inside and outside Spain.
In 2018 he publishes for sale the Tarot de Laguna, a research and personal development work based on the fundamentals of psychoanalysis.
He is currently researching the relationship between science and art, which he says is “inseparable from me“, as well as being interested in the graphic study of other subjects such as masculinity, fear and human emotions, love and blindness.
The protagonists tend to be characters from his surroundings and models that he usually photographs in his studio, predominantly men, with a melancholic, pessimistic and solitary character, wich is the main subject dealt with in most of his works.
Bran Sólo is a lover of the sea, linking its color palette to the Mediterranean.
He usually replaces the shape and colour of the human body with a blue colour like the sea, on backgrounds reminiscent of the fine sand of some of the Mediterranean landscapes in which he gets inspired.
MASCULINITY – MACHO IS DEAD
It’s one of the reasons he says he’s here.
“We all know the stale stereotype of the IBERIAN MALE. The strong man, hard, determined, powerful, sexual, a little bit bull, a little bit pig. In Spain, men are educated in this way, to be insensitive beasts that can work twelve hours, earn nine hundred euros, carry a family with many children, copulate when asked and close their mouths to any personal problem. If there is any sorrow, they should go to the bar to drink and watch football.
I have grown up in a society (using the term society as WE, and not THE OTHERS) that has imposed values on me without considering their weight. I am expected to be strong, masculine, not afraid, not to have complaints. I have to protect others, lead the group, be the alpha male everyone expects, raise a family, pull everything forward and never waver.
I have no choice but to refuse.
The feminist movements that resurface, by fortune and necessity, at the end of this decade as well as the discourses of gender liberation and sexual identity reveal the new scenario in which the man finds himself, perhaps mistreated by all these currents.
It is a reality that there is a consciousness of NEW MASCULINITIES, where a man can be a man, and that means, if you want to, be sensitive, be afraid, be fragile, need help… or be whatever you want to be as a man, as if that means being what we think a woman should be.
My discourse is this, as is my work. Free men, strong or not. Whatever they choose to be.“
The idea, based in part on the essay by the Belgian philosopher and art historian Hippolyte Fierens-Gevaer entitled Contemporary sadness: essay on the great moral and intellectual currents of the nineteenth century, inspires Bran to work on the feeling of loneliness, of feeling different, excluded and rejected in a pessimistic, exhausted environment, where faith in humanity, and therefore in oneself, has been lost.
“To doubt, not of the existence of God, but of the presence of a divine virtue in human acts, is the highest form of contemporary sadness”. (Hippolyte Fierens-Gevaer)
The 2017 Ansak series of illustrations reflects this pessimistic character through his inexpressive, slightly melancholy, dark portraits of faces that, although deformed by the emotions of the portrayed character, do not fail to convey the forgotten beauty behind the pain and fear that seems to drown the model.
The theme that worries the painter the most is solitude, reflecting it even in his name with a “o” with a tilde (the one of “Sólo”) that more reminds to an adverb of quantity than to an adjective of company in the spanish language.
“It is not about loneliness in the context of dependence on a partner or family, but it refers to the feeling of being unable to find or return home, to connect with other people or simply to feel overwhelmed by the brutal scenery that nature, as majestic as it is perverse, holds for us”.
It is possible that the visual circumstance that characterizes Bran’s personality aggravates this feeling of loneliness, creating a ghostly and hostile scenario, empty of humanity.
Is this characteristic, which makes any person who moves more than a few centimetres away into a shadow, reaffirms the painter’s need for the physical, for touch as a substitute for vision (hence symbols such as the hand with an eye in the palm), and for the value of the company and the exchange of visions.
Affection, admiration, connection, protection and commitment are recurring themes and inspirational motives for the symbology that appears in his works.
Paloma Negra collective
In 2017, together with his inseparable partner Daniel “El Dibujo”, he founded the Circulo de Artistas Paloma Negra, with the aim of giving visibility to a group of artists with a message and a concept of similar artistic work, fleeing from the artistic emptiness created by the Contemporary Art Market.
Paloma Negra’s discourse begins with the phrase “Not everything is worth”, as a reference to the loss of meaning that the art of the contemporary movement has experienced after the rise of the artistic avant-garde.
In addition, Paloma Negra focuses on the figure of the artist as an experienced composer, a being with a different sensibility that far from pursuing fame, profitability and recognition at all costs, focuses its attention on his work, providing it with message and technique, emotion and meaning, and returns the value to the artistic work, giving it the unique and personal impression of the composer.
Initially they are members of the collective artists such as Espinaca Explosiva, Fran Munyoz, Alejandro Llamas, Jaume Mora, Dino Galvagno, Pablo Álvarez, Jav Rubín, Julia Navarro, Vorja Sánchez and Oct Streitenberger.
2014 Completion of Higher Technical Studies in Art and Design in Illustration at the School of Arts of Murcia. / Técnico superior en Arte y Diseño en Ilustración por la Escuela de Arte de Murcia.
2006 Completion of Higher Technical Studies in Software Development and Database Analysis. / Técnico superior en Análisis y Desarrollo de Aplicaciones Informáticas.
2018 Exposición individual en Feria de Arte “ArtGaysel 4“, organizada por Hôtel Gaythering de Miami Beach, Florida. USA
2018 Exposición Colectiva “Orgullo“, organizada por Paloma Negra, en el espacio Nawalis, Chueca, Madrid.
2018 Muestra individual “Dragones”, en el restaurante Sr.Ito, Chueca, Madrid.
2018 Exposición colectiva “UNICON · Unique Art Condoms”, en la Galería THEREDOOM, Madrid.
2018 Exposición “FRENTE A FRENTE” junto a Daniel “El Dibujo” y comisariada por 180 hilos en el espacio Café Miau, Madrid.
2018 Exposición colectiva “LIBRA“, organizada por Paloma Negra en el espacio Librería El Público, Elche.
2018 Exposición grupal en el espacio Arquitectura de Barrio, Murcia.
2018 Exposición colectiva “MUSA“, organizada por Paloma Negra en el espacio Bacanal Café, Barcelona.
2017 Exposición colectiva “UNFOLLOW“, organizada por Paloma Negra en el espacio The Rubias, Valencia.
2017 Exposición individual en feria ArtGaysel en Hôtel Gaythering, Miami Beach, Florida, USA
2017 Exposición individual “Ansak“, en Kipfer&Lover, Málaga.
2017 Exposición colectiva con motivo del 5º Aniversario de 180hilos, en Swinton&Grant, Madrid, con venta en tiendas Llibrería Laie de Madrid, Barcelona, Málaga y Sevilla y tiendas de museo Centre Pompidou Málaga, Caixa Forum Madrid, MACBA Barcelona, CCCB Barcelona y stand Laie de Feria de Arte ARCO Madrid 2018.
2017 Exposición individual “Azul“, en El Gallinero Café, Murcia.
2017 Exposición colectiva “The Red Blue Chair“, organizada por el colectivo Paloma Negra en La Post Street, Murcia.
2017 Exposición colectiva “StickersArt” organizada por Plataforma de Arte Contemporáneo (PAC) en la feria de edición ESTAMPA, Madrid.
2017 Exposición colectiva “Frankenstein no es el monstruo“, comisariada por Zony Gómez en la galería Nigredo Espacio, Madrid.
2017 Exposición colectiva “Hotel x Hotel II“, en Factoría de Arte y Desarrollo, Madrid.
2017 Exposición colectiva “Cabra de Lado“, en VILLAPUCHEROFACTORY, Málaga.
2017 Exposición colectiva “Humanizar un ser no humano” en El Gallinero Café, Murcia.
2017 Exposición colectiva “The Free Wee Project” organizada por Plataforma de Arte Contemporáneo (PAC) en Swinton & Grant.
2017 Exposición colectiva “Hotel x Hotel” comisariada por Guillermo Martín Bermejo para Art&Breakfast3 en el Museo Carmen Thyssen, Málaga.
2017 Exposición colectiva “Mayo a Frida” en Vergel Espacio, Murcia.
2017 Exposición colectiva “WHEN YOU ARE A STRANGER” en Galería Échale Guindas, Madrid.
2017 Exposición indidual “El hombre perfecto” junto a El Dibujo y Fran Munyoz en Matraca Gallery, Málaga.
2017 Exposición “Habibi” de retrato en edición limitada junto a El Dibujo en El Gallinero Café, Murcia.
2016 Exposición colectiva de Navidad en Galería NB7 FLECHA (Organizadora de Feria de Arte FLECHA) participando con cuatro obras, Núñez de Balboa 7, Madrid.
2016 Exposición colectiva “CienxCien” en la galería The Makers participando con la obra “Rojo como los labios de quien yo sé”, Madrid.
2015 Exposición individual “Perfume de Flor de Cuchillo” en el espacio Kipfer&Lover, con residencia en VILLAPUCHEROFACTORY, Málaga.
2015 Exposición colectiva “Espejo de Sombras” comisariada por Guillermo Martín Bermejo en Factoría de Arte y Desarrollo, Madrid.
2014 Exposición colectiva de fotografía e ilustración sobre piedra DISONANTES, organizada por la fotógrafa Lorena Velasco en el espacio LAB (Laboratorio de Arte Joven), Murcia.
2014 Exposición colectiva CREAJOVEN 2014 Fotografía en el espacio LAB (Laboratorio de Arte Joven), Murcia.
2014 Selección del jurado como finalista en certamen CREAJOVEN Murcia 2014 en la categoría de fotografía.
2014 Beca de ilustración con Inês Oliveira en Oporto, Portugal.
2014 Exposición colectiva con motivo de la Mujer por la Escuela de Arte de Murcia en el Centro Cultural El Carmen, de Murcia.
2013 Accésit concurso navidad Escuela de Arte de Murcia.
2010 Exposición colectiva “Inake”, Programa Oficial Paralelos Manifesta 8, en Casas Consistoriales, Mazarrón, Murcia.
2015-2018 Taller de transferencia de imágenes, organizado en Barcelona, Gerona, Madrid, Valencia y Sevilla.
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